A Guide to Barcelona’s Best Architectural Sights
There is only one city in the world that has been awarded the prestigious Royal Golden medal for architecture and that is Spain’s Barcelona. The buildings in this city are bold, colourful, contrasting and unique. They are nothing you have seen before which is why it is namely Barcelona’s architecture that has turned this place into a popular tourist destination… so popular that Ciudad Condal is an even more visited than the country’s capital – Madrid. If you want to see the city’s stunning architectural masterpieces, rent a car in Barcelona and head over to neighbourhoods such as Gràcia and Eixample to see some of the world’s most whimsically beautiful buildings. Many of them were designed by Spanish architect Antoni Gaudi and have the status of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Such is the case with:
- Casa Mila
- Parque Güell
- Palacio Güell
- Casa Vicens
- Crypt at the Colonia Güell
- Sagrada Familia
- Casa Batllo
Basilica of Sagrada Familia
This is one of the most famous buildings designed by Gaudi. Even though the construction of this Roman Catholic church started back in 1882, it still has not been finished. It is expected that the building will be finally completed at some time in 2026 or even later. The church’s design is like a mixture between Catalan Modernism, Art Nouveau and Spanish Late Gothic and if you climb to one of its towers, you will enjoy a breath-taking view of the city. When Basilica of Sagrada Familia is completed, it will become the highest religious building on the Old Continent.
One more of Gaudi’s interesting creations, Park Güell was never meant to be a park. Its initial purpose was to be a housing complex. It was constructed back in 1914 and today you can visit it in exchange for an entrance fee. But those will be money well-spent because the park features several other architectural creations and buildings which are worth seeing.
Pictured: Park Güell, Barcelona
Unlike the two previous Gaudi buildings on this list, this one was not originally designed by the notorious architect. It was constructed in the 19th century and later, in the early-20th> century, it was restored by Antoni Gaudi. Today, Casa Batllo is said to be one of the most beautiful and one-of-a-kind buildings in Barcelona but back when Gaudi was working on it, its odd design received a lot of criticism because it deviated from the building and aesthetic conventions that were established in the city back then. Even today, the casa’s appearance stands in striking contrast to the other structures in the area.
Barcelona’s Gothic Quarter
Gaudi-style architecture is not the only type of architecture which you can see in Barcelona. The city has an entire Gothic Quarter. It is located in one of its oldest parts and it is characterised by its narrow streets. Some of the key sight you can find here include Gothic masterpieces such as the Cathedral of Santa Eulalia and the Church of Santa Maria del Pi. Several Roman buildings can also be seen in Barcelona’s Gothic Quarter among which is are the remains of a large Roman Temple.